A conventional periodontal therapy, scaling and root planning is a non-surgical periodontal therapy and deep cleaning. A hygienist or doctor will conduct this therapy to remove or eliminate the harmful buildup on your teeth. Also known as plaque and calculus, this harmful buildup is the source of your oral inflammation. To help clear your mouth of disease, Dr. Fialkoff may recommend that you get a scaling and root planning.
Plaque irritates the gums and causes inflammation. When this inflammation becomes continuous, the person has now developed gingivitis. If untreated, gingivitis can develop into a more serious condition called periodontitis which requires scaling and root planning to treat. If, however, the plaque has advanced to the point where there is already significant bone loss and loss of the attachment tissues, the disease has progressed into periodontal disease.
Bacteria thrives in environment where plaque and tartar are left on the teeth. This irritates the gums and can cause them to bleed more easily. This bleeding can occur when you brush your teeth or when eating, and is the early stage of the gum disease called gingivitis. To handle gingivitis, your dentist or hygienist will clean the plaque off of your teeth and surrounding areas by conducting a scaling of the area and polishing your teeth. If you wait too long to have the treatment and the gingivitis stays untreated, the inflammation and bacteria will spread to the foundations of the tooth which will cause what is known as a “periodontal pocket”. This develops a condition where the bacteria will cause even more damage.
This pocket shows that the person has gum disease. Gum disease breaks down the support structures of the teeth (the bone), which results in the teeth becoming loose. The person may have no symptoms for quite some times, but once the damage is done—it is irreversible. On the other hand, if the gum disease is caught and handled in time, its development can be stopped and the condition can be improved.
Your dentist and Dr. Fialkoff may suggest that you get a form of periodontal therapy called scaling and root planning to stop the gum disease from progressing, to get rid of the bacteria in the pocket and facilitate the bodies healing process in the mouth. Scaling is the process of removing dental buildup or tartar from the surfaces of the teeth. Root planing is the process of removing any infected tooth structure and the smoothening of the root surfaces. When you have pocketing of the gum or gum disease, the pockets around the teeth have grown which then allowed deposits of tartar to form in the area, under the gumline. During the scaling and root planing treatment, this tartar will be removed, resulting in a silky, smooth surface.
The longer you leave plaque unhandled and left on your teeth, the harder and more solid it gets. Some plaque hardens into calculus/tartar in just 24 hours. This does not come off by brushing your teeth or by flossing. The Periodontal scaling and root planning treatment involved the removal of plaque, calculus and stain from the tooth and root surface of the teeth. This is a vital step toward stopping the progression of periodontal or gum disease, especially when deeper pockets have developed in the gums.
To treat gum disease before it becomes severe, your general dentist or Dr. Fialkoff will recommend that you get this treatment as it is very effective.
Many cases require that you get your scaling and root planings done by one quadrant per appointment. For example, at your first appointment, the hygienist or doctor may only work on the upper right side of the mouth and then the upper left, lower left and lower right worked on at separate appointments. Another way that the procedure can be done is by doing one half of the mouth per appointment. This would consist of upper right and lower right on one visit, and then the upper left and lower left at a second visit.